Baby massage

If you are a parent, a wonderful way to enhance the emotional bond between you and your baby is to incorporate a relaxing massage into his/her everyday treatment routine. Your caress can offer your baby calmness, relief if it is suffering from colic aches and/or constipation, muscle and nervous system strengthening, enhanced blood circulation, better quality and longer duration of sleep.
The best period to start massaging your baby is when it is 3-4 months old. Avoid massaging newborns.
Some advice so that you and your baby enjoy the experience is:
  • Choose a time when you are calm and certain that you will not be interrupted. Your baby should not be hungry nor with a full stomach. The best time is before night sleep.
  • During the massage you can sing or talk to your baby, especially when it is lying on its tummy and can not see you.
  • Make sure that the room is adequately warm, your hands are clean and warm, your nails short and you are not wearing any jewels that could injure the delicate baby skin.
  • Always use pure eatable oil (for example olive oil) or special baby products since the baby might put its hands in the mouth or eyes. Avoid using oils extracted from seeds or nuts, such as almond or walnut oil, as they could cause allergy. In any case before the first massage apply a small amount of oil in a limited area, for exapmle the inner of the elbow, and leave it for 2-3 hours. If no irritation occurs the oil is safe for use.
  • The massage duration depends on the mood and receptivity of your baby. If it shows discomfort or starts crying stop immediately and try another time when it is calmer.
  • Essential oils are very drastic and should not be used when massaging a baby.
You can see an enlightening slideshow of basic baby massage movements here.
If you are further interested in baby massage there is a valuable selection of  books και DVD with useful information and massage methods for children and infants.

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